Government’s callousness

January 11, 2018

The abduction, rape and murder of the eight year old girl in Kasur has shocked the entire country; what is more shocking the callousness of the government. The most recent gruesome incident is not the first that has happened in Kasur. Back in 2015, the largest-ever child abuse scandal came to surface; the scandal took place in Kasur. News reports said that 400 videos recordings of more than 280 children being forced to have sex were discovered. Most of the victims were under the age of 14. The scandal caused nationwide outrage, but what was the reaction of the government? The immediate reaction back then came from Punjab Law Minister Rana Sanaullah, who not only denied that more than 200 children had been sexually abused in Kasur district but claimed that it was a land dispute between two parties one of which wrongly projected it as a case of sexual abuse.
In April 2016, a Court sentenced two men to life imprisonment for their role in the Kasur child abuse case. However, the government did little to protect the victims and nab others who were involved in the heinous act. Roughly three weeks back victims of the Kasur child abuse scandal blamed the Punjab government for backing the alleged rapists. The residents of Kasur district while addressing a news conference in Lahore threatened the provincial government that they would collectively commit “self-immolations” if the government would not pay heed to their demands. Speaking at the said news conference, Kasur Union Council Chairman Mubeen Ghazanvi had claimed that victims have lost trust in the Punjab government because the (alleged) rapists are being provided protocol on the behest of the rulers. He further claimed that victims are being victimized and the criminals are hurling life threats at the victims and their families from jails by using mobile phones. The victims had appealed to the Chief of Army Staff, General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Chief Justice of Pakistan Mian Saqib Nisar, and Chief Justice of the Lahore Court Syed Mansoor Ali Shah to help them get justice.
As per media reports at least, 10 minors raped were killed in Kasur city last year. The most recent incident is just the continuation of the heinous crimes being committed in a city roughly 50 kilometers from the provincial capital, where the most powerful Chief Minister in the country holds power. The Punjab Chief Minister has done little more than taking ‘strict notice’ of such incidents. The callousness and apathy of the government was further cemented when the Punjab police resorted to straight firing at the people who were protesting against most recent incident of rape and murder.
The situation for now is one of extreme hopelessness; the victims have been deserted by the government. The criminals involved in these heinous crimes continue to target kids.
The recent incident in Kasur in not an isolated one, it is a continuation of the barbarity happening for long.

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